Doughnut Plant (NY) – Beware of the Waistline
You could start your own doughnut plant, right around your waist, if you visit Manhattan too often.
My first visit to Doughnut Plant left me wondering what the hype was about. Sure, more-artisinal-than-normal ingredients for a doughnut but the end result left me unsatisfied. The doughnuts are made by hand with natural ingredients – fresh fruits, sea salt, fresh milk, fresh butter, and unbleached unbromated flour. Glazes follow the same formula. It’s a study in dialectics – healthier junk food and hoity toity doughnuts that are affordable for nearly everyone.
It’s an easy story for the media to latch onto (and they did) so I viewed the place with some scepticism after that first visit. (And there are others who believe the popularity has led to a decrease in quality.)
On a second visit, I tried the infamous Coconut Cream doughnut and then I fully understood. Coconut and sugar on the outside of a yeasty, coconut cream center – it could easily be a daily habit if I lived on the island. The doughnut has a nuanced and subtle coconut flavor permeating it. When you bite in, the cream doesn’t gush out as it might in an inferior doughnut; instead, its ratio is near perfect for the amount of bread.
They sell the doughnuts throughout the city (Whole Foods, Dean & Deluca, etc) but I’d suggest visiting the source. Get there by early afternoon to ensure there are still a few left. If you happen to be in Tokyo, they are popping up all over the city – the Japanese love affair with desserts.
The innards – while the picture may not be appetiziing, you can see the lightness of the doughnut.
It’s the sort of formula that could be copied anywhere. Take a comfort food from our past (doughnuts, ice cream, pizza, hot dogs, ramen, etc), create a high-quality artisinal version, stream-line some of the production while maintaining the artisinal roots, and sell it in low-rent bare-bones storefronts and/or farmer’s markets. The anti-business argument is that people are conditioned to pay cheaper prices for these foods but I think people are beginning to recognize and value quality, thus the few places you have seen pop up.
What are other places in your area that fit this criteria?